The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is spearheading a fight in the state of Maine to end bear hunting. They are gathering signatures to put a referendum on the ballot for November 2014 that would end all bear hunting and trapping. On the surface it appears to be about bear hunting, but really it is much more than that. It has implications for hunters, anglers, and trappers across North America, because what happens in Maine will cause waves throughout the outdoor community that will last for years.
Of the many states that animal rights activists might target, why would they choose Maine of all places, a state where there is such a rich hunting heritage? The answer lies in two areas. One, many people from the East Coast have been moving to Maine to get away from the rat race of the big cities and with them they bring their city attitudes and ignorance about wildlife. In addition, the urban areas of Maine have been growing and most people in those areas are out-of-touch with nature and vulnerable to believing the HSUS’ lies. They feel they can direct a lot of money in Maine and bombard the cities with negative messages about hunting and have a very good chance to win.